Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Book Review: Mrs. Roosevelt's Confidant

Kerry Hammond is here to talk about the latest book in the Maggie Hope Mystery Series by Susan Elia MacNeal.

Mrs. Roosevelt’s Confidant, by Susan Elia MacNeal is the 5th book in the Maggie Hope mystery series. This latest installment hits book stores on October 27th, published by Bantam. I was dying to read this book because I have read each and every one of the Maggie Hope books. They’re one of my favorite historical mystery series and I just love Maggie’s character. She’s tough, smart, and a spy for the British government (even though she’s American). The books take place during WWII and Maggie works for Winston Churchill as his “secretary.”

This latest installment takes place in the United States, and Maggie crosses the pond with Churchill and the rest of his staff for a meeting with President Roosevelt. It’s 1941 and the Japanese have just bombed Pearl Harbor. The United States is about to enter the war, and the two world leaders need to plan their strategy to defeat Hitler. Maggie, as usual, travels as Churchill’s secretary, but her skills lie well outside her ability to type. While she’s at the White House, Mrs. Roosevelt gets into a little trouble of her own and needs Maggie’s assistance. The first lady’s assistant is found murdered, and she is implicated in her death. Maggie thinks that Mrs. Roosevelt is being targeted because of her adamant support of a retrial for a black man who is on death row, and about to be executed. She also realizes that if she doesn’t help clear things up, the US/British alliance could be in jeopardy.

I love that the author weaves historical information into the books. She not only includes actual events, but actual people. You can tell that the time period has been meticulously researched in order to give things a proper air of authenticity. The characters, both real and fictional, are part of the reason I keep coming back. They’re the kind of characters that you grow to care about, causing you to wait impatiently for the next book in order to hear what they’re up to.

I really enjoy the books that take place in Europe, but this change of venue was really interesting. The ongoing relationships between Maggie and her friends and family are another thing I look forward to. These are books that can stand on their own, but once you read one, you will really want to go back and start from the beginning.

This book was provided to Mystery Playground by the publisher. The review is fair and independent.

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